About 25 ADF women took to the water of Lake Burley Griffin in Canberra to try out their sailing skills.

CAPTION: Aircraftwoman Ayumi Kono, left, and Aircraftwoman Samantha Shen enjoy a morning of sailing at Lake Burley Griffin, Canberra. Photo by Sergeant Janine Fabre.

The ADF Sailing Association’s ‘She Sails’ Discover Sailing Day was held in conjunction with the Canberra Yacht Club on February 7.

Alice Burgess, an instructor at the Canberra Yacht Club, said these events were a great way for women to see if it was something they’d enjoy.

“As a woman it was really good to see so many other ladies getting out there sailing,” Ms Burgess said.

“We taught them some theory and how to rig up the boats, how to capsize and retrieve the boat.

“They all seemed to pick up the rigging pretty well and, although there was not much wind, they were keeping it upright.

“I saw a lot of smiles and laughs so I think they enjoyed themselves.”

President of the ADF Sailing Association Wing Commander Sean Ahern said sailing was great because it was not gender specific.

“When we sail, we don’t have men’s or women’s divisions, we have class divisions. So it depends on what boat you are racing as to what race you are in,” Wing Commander Ahern said.

“The boat is the differentiation, not the gender.

“The event is about giving people the basic skills and to give them a little bit of confidence so they can start their journey.”

RAAF Corporal Cheyenne Patena-Edmonds has been sailing for a while and first started with the Newcastle ‘She Sails’.

“We are a group of ladies who get together and want to learn sailing,” Corporal Patena-Edmonds said.

“It is a great introduction to sailing. Just learning the basics such as looking at the weather, the wind, how to rig a boat.

“I think it is an amazing environment to learn in because you go back to the basics. It is just a good atmosphere as well.”